Review: Venue – Al Mawaddah Mosque

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Photo: My cousin’s camera

 

You can read about my experience surveying the mosque facilities and making the booking here, some restrictions to using it here and more details here.

Address: 151 Compassvale Bow, Singapore 544997

Contact number: 64890224

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Photo: Flashed Studio

 

Video link: Majlis Akad Nikah Nurul Ain & Noordin by Pohon Minda (I’m not linking my own video here as firstly, we do not have any trailer / highlights version online, and secondly I honestly think this video gives a much better view of how the solemnisation area looks like. Side note:  The video company is based in JB, and I actually did give them serious consideration – even contacted them on WhatsApp and got a quotation! But there wasn’t much cost savings to be made and it would have been too much of a hassle to make multiple trips to JB for appointments.)

Final cost: $940

(Breakdown:

$800 – Basic rental package of solemnisation area and reception area for 4 hours with usage of changing room for first 2 hours

$40 –  Rental of additional 4 rectangular tables at $10 each

$100 –  Refundable security deposit which I eventually did not claim and considered a donation to the mosque)

 

Review:

Solemnisation section

Love the fact that the airconditioned solemnisation section (where the dais was located) was a hit among my cousins, small kids, grandma and the makcik-makcik (aunts)! It was certainly the perfect lepak-lepak (hangout) place as it was, literally, cool (not that the weather that day was so hot to begin with) and it was away from the maddening crowd of guests that came and went. Good for my relatives as they could chit chat in comfort, and good for the other guests as there were less people hogging the tables. The small kids could also run around without being much of a nuisance or a hazard to other guests.

And of course, the place served its primary function very well, being big enough to hold most of our relatives and friends who wanted to witness the solemnisation. As for those who couldn’t come in, the glass panels provided just as good a view:

Photo: Flashed Studio

Photo: Flashed Studio

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Photo: Flashed Studio

 

One good thing about having your wedding venue at basement level is that you don’t have to worry about the weather. Rain or shine, you’d be just as dry (not drenched due to rain nor perspiring due to the rays of the merciless sun beating down on you). I only realised this when I looked at the following photo:

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Photo: Flashed Studio

 

Reception area

Moving on to the post solemnisation partayyy reception, I was glad to see that the setup felt cozy, not cramped, while at the same time the whole place had an airy feel to it. I believe it’s due to a combination of clear weather, good lighting, choice of decor colour and the many, many ceiling fans – look out for them!

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Photo: Flashed Studio

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Photo: Flashed Studio

Looking at these two photos above also reminds me why this venue is so much better more preferable to me than a void deck; there are no annoying pillars right smack in the middle of the reception area! I have noticed that some void decks feel constricted due to the existence of pillars every few metres. Not only that, the pillars would be dirty with unsightly smears, spoiling the whole look of the decor unless every square inch is covered with cloth, which would mean additional cost for decor. The only two pillars you see on both sides, or rather, both ends of the reception area actually serve as pretty good partitioning to mark the start of the buffet line on the left, and the guest wishes and wedding favours corner on the right.

Changing room

The changing room is actually a guest room which the mosque uses to accommodate invited speakers from overseas. So, besides being airconditioned, the room is pretty big; there’s a single bed in it, a full-length mirror, and there’s even a section separated by a door which I would call a pantry, complete with a sink with running water, cabinets, and a small dining table! So if you have a bevy of bridesmaids following you around, they could very easily all fit into the changing room along with you, your husband, your makeup artist / bridal assistant and your photographer! Not that we both changed in it at the same time with the former two / three persons in there, of course. And while I didn’t have an official bridesmaid, the husband’s best man did actually use the room to nap when we were back downstairs.

I don’t have photos of the whole changing room, but the following one taken from the pantry section shows a little of (bolsters on) the bed in the background:

Photo: Flashed Studio

Photo: Flashed Studio

Photo: Flashed Studio

Photo: Flashed Studio

Above: My husband getting some help from my second brother with his samping. Behind him is the wooden panel at the head of the bed; the place where the both of them were standing would be to the left of where I was sitting in the previous photo, on the other side of the single bed.

The small dining table and countertop in the pantry section also proved useful as we put all my wedding gifts there for safekeeping.

Photo: My cousin's camera

Photo: My cousin’s camera

 

I’m sure you can tell I am very, very satisfied and glad that I chose the mosque as my wedding venue. However, since this is a review I’d like to strive to be as objective as possible and include both the good and the bad. Other than the restrictions that I had mentioned previously, there are perhaps three other things that you should take note of if you are seriously considering this venue for your own wedding.

Firstly, the mosque has limited parking space. Since part of the basement parking would have been used as the reception area, there would not be many parking lots left. The mosque said they’d reserve a few for us, but cannot guarantee that all the other lots would be available as it depends on the mosque visitorship on that day. There is, however, a small slip road right at the entrance of the mosque which I observed has been used by visitors to park their cars. I estimate up to 15 to 20 cars can fit there. I had informed by brothers and brother-in-law about this earlier and asked for their help to monitor the parking situation. My parents also might have mentioned the lack of parking space to relatives when they went around inviting them. Post-wedding, I did not hear my family mention any parking problem, so I’m assuming no news is good news.

The second thing was highlighted to us by my decorator. It concerned the footwear of both guests and us as hosts, bride and groom. No, no, there is no such thing as Islamic and non-Islamic footwear (at least in my book, the haram police might beg to differ haha). This was more of a movement issue in terms of where we can put on footwear, and where we would have to take it off. You see, upon arriving at the main entrance of the mosque, everyone has to take off their footwear. From there, to get to my wedding venue they can either take the stairs or the lift. If they take the stairs, which is a part of the mosque which is supposed to be free of footwear, they will then encounter the solemnisation section on the left and the reception area on the right.

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Photo: Flashed Studio

Now, there would be no problem at all if all that guests wanted to do was to greet my husband and I, and then proceed to just chill in the airconditioned section. But of course no guest would be content to just see the bride and groom, no matter how gorgeous they look! You come to a wedding to enjoy the food! So after that (and sometimes guests don’t even bother to see the bride and groom first), of course they’d head to the buffet line, which is at the reception area. And guess where the reception area is? It’s where cars would be parked if the area had not been used as a reception area. So of course, guests need to put on their footwear. And their footwear would be back upstairs at level 1, at the main entrance of the mosque. Those who take the lift would have been greeted by a line just outside the lift door, indicating the start of the floor of the parking area, and they’d be faced with the choice of either walking barefoot or going back up to retrieve their footwear from the main entrance, carry them while taking the lift and putting them back on once the lift gets to basement level.

If you are a bit lost by now, I don’t blame you. Try to read that whole paragraph again and visualise it, ok.

Anyway, there would be no problem at all for the guests who came from the main road, either by dropping at the bus stop or alighting from a taxi or vehicle at the main road instead of going into the slip road and right up to the main entrance. They can just walk in from the grassy slope without having to take off their footwear at all.

Smooth concrete ramp at top left of photo

Smooth concrete ramp at top left of photo

The reception area viewed from the main road; a short walk from the bus stop!

The reception area viewed from the main road; a short walk from the bus stop!

(The above two photos are from a year before my wedding, when I came to survey the mosque.)

So my decorator advised us to appoint someone to stand at the main entrance of the mosque, to advise guests to take off their footwear and carry them until they get to the reception / parking area. Again, this duty fell to my brothers and brother-in-law (I’m not sure if they roped in my uncles or male cousins to help out, maybe they did.) However, I later found out that they found an alternative way which was so much more convenient for everyone. Nobody had to take off their footwear, apparently; they were simply directed to walk down to the basement level by using the carpark ramp. This may sound dangerous, and indeed it would be if this had been any other day at the mosque. But since there were limited parking lots anyway and I think many drivers were told to just park at the slip road, there wasn’t much incoming and outgoing vehicle ‘activity’ using the carpark ramp. Stylish guests in 10-inch heels might have been the only one at risk of injuring themselves since the ramp was a little steep – not that any injury was reported. ;P

Lastly, I think that the mosque can improve in terms of customer service. While there were no major problems or issues when I was dealing with the officer-in-charge, I just felt that she could have been more diplomatic and reassuring in the way she interacted with us. I remember calling her to inform her that I had hired a deejay and that he would like to come down to the mosque to see the place, and she immediately jumped and said strictly no deejay allowed (even though it was not stated in the package’s terms and conditions), without giving me a chance to explain first that this was a special kind of deejay. Perhaps she did go through bad experience with previous weddings where the deejay played inappropriate songs or did not lower down the volume, but I just thought she could have at least given us the benefit of the doubt instead of immediately assuming we’d be just like one of those customers who disregard the restrictions and discard all common sense with regards to the etiquette of holding a wedding at a mosque. Thankfully, everything went more or less smoothly, and I – or rather, my mom – got to have the deejay at my wedding after all.

So, would I recommend this venue to others? That’s a BIG FAT YES! YES YES YES! In fact, I would love to attend any other wedding there in the future, because it would bring back sweet memories of my own wedding, and because there’s just a tranquility about being there that you just have to experience for yourself.🙂🙂🙂

I hope this review has been useful! I loved doing it!

8 thoughts on “Review: Venue – Al Mawaddah Mosque

  1. Salam alaik! Ramadhan kareem. Anw, i came across your blog and i am thinking of al Mawaddah too for my wedding. May i know when did u start booking for the venue? I went to al mawaddah on Saturday but the office was closed. Met the imam there and he said it is almost full.😦

    • Wassalam.. Happy Ramadan to you too!🙂
      I booked the place about 1 and a half years before my wedding. Do speak to the officer-in-charge herself, perhaps you could call during office hours.

      • Salam.. thank you for your review. Im having my wedding there in dec 2014. Ive yet to recce the place. Certainly agree with the footwear issues.

        im quite concerned if the eating place will be cramped. However, you are the 2nd person to say it is cozy. Awesome🙂

      • Salam.. Wow, your wedding is this December? By that time I would be (close to) celebrating my 1-year anniversary already! Congratulations in advance to you (and myself haha)! Well actually it also depends on how many guests you invite. I invited 500 people so I think that’s pretty okay for 15 tables. Although it did get a little busy during the peak period around noon or just after Zuhur, but that’s pretty much the case for all weddings, wherever the venue. Anyway I hope all your preparations are going well. Just 3 to 4 months left! How exciting!😀

  2. Salam! May Allah bless you for saving me and my fiance’s time by blogging about this perfect venue.

    I was wondering may I get the contacts of the caterer and DJ which you hired and the costs? I really do need a DJ ’cause I dont think DJ KC is suitable for the mosque😛

    • Salam! Apologies for the late reply.. My caterer is Doulath Catering and the DJ is DJ Inspirasi Nur Muhammad. I’ll have to dig up their contact details, but I think you can find them by doing a quick search!

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